The United States quickly slammed the launch and vowed to take “all necessary measures” to guarantee the safety of its mainland and allies South Korea and Japan. Vice President Kamala Harris will separately meet with leaders of Japan, South Korea, Australia, New Zealand and Canada who are attending a regional forum in Bangkok to discuss North Korea’s recent ballistic missile launch, the AP reported.
The North’s ongoing torrid run of weapons tests aims to advance its nuclear arsenal and win greater concessions in eventual diplomacy and they come as China and Russia have opposed US moves to toughen sanctions aimed at curbing North Korea’s nuclear program.
South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff said it detected the ICBM launch from North Korea’s capital region around 10:15 a.m. and the weapon flew toward the North’s eastern coast across the country. Japan said the ICBM appeared to have flown on a high trajectory and landed west of Hokkaido.
According to South Korean and Japanese estimates, the North Korean missile flew about 6,000-6,100 kilometers (3,600-3,790 miles) at a maximum altitude of 1,000 kilometers (620 miles).
US National Security Council spokesperson Adrienne Watson said the launch “needlessly raises tensions and risks destabilizing” regional security while showing the North’s prioritizing of unlawful weapons programs over the well-being of it people. He said President Joe Biden was briefed over the launch.